Of Great Social and Political Import

A stopped clock is right twice a day...

American Exceptionalism, Individualism, Mutual Help will restore us.

The progressive peddlers of programs and tea party tinkerers of taxes are locking horns in Washington DC and personally I don't subscribe to either major political party's agenda. My belief is neither side is acting in the best interest of the American people but merely serving their own purposes. I keep hearing a variation on the statement "they are trying to drive us back to the pre-Depression era." 'They' being I suppose that enigmatic collaboration of tea party, Republicans and conservatives and the complaint coming from liberals who have redressed themselves as progressives. My first thought is I wonder if anyone has considered that the programs of the Great Depression may be what got us into the Disruption Depression we are in today? That and consumerism.

There is a ridiculous headline in the Wall Street Journal "Slow Growth Stirs Recession Fears." Recession? What!? A recession implies a bump in the road and what we're experiencing is far larger than a recession. Statistics can be manipulated anyway someone wants but the reality is our credit rating will be downgraded regardless of any machinations of the Administration, US Treasury, Congress or Wall Street. There are two systemic problems that cannot be ignored by printing money. We are overleveraged as individuals and so is our government and additionally unemployment has become structural. Therefore if people are not able to productively earn money then debt cannot be paid off and will be repudiated.

We never pulled out of the recession in 2009 as some economists would have us believe, merely suspended it. Paul Krugman of the New York Times can rename this the "Little Depression," after all the damage he has done promoting the excessive printing of money, but the bottom line is we are heading for a long decade of economic restructuring and rebuilding. We will have both stagnation and hyper-inflation more endemic than the US in the seventies and Japan in the nineties. If you take the political and bureaucratic classes in DC and the financiers in New York seriously and rely on them for a solution then the joke is on you. They don't have a clue or care about anything west of I-95 and are concerned only with protecting their own self-interests.

In the long term I believe American Exceptionalism and Individualism is alive and well, although buried just beneath the surface, it is burgeoning resurrection. That ideal will be the ultimate resolution to the death of consumerism by technological and economic disruption and is a great thing. We will relearn and return to what it means to be innovative and creative and produce unique and valuable goods that are useful for the new era. It will take time and hard work. The sooner people recognize that reality we will be prepared to move forward. What our government is doing now is pure folly and nonsensical and you can't make sense out of a nonsensical situation. They are postponing the inevitable by trying to revive a dead concept, the old economy.

The American people must relearn to work for themselves. If it is for an employer they need to embrace the concept of being a free agent and not love an employer because they won't love you back. Americans should accept we are not entitled to anything except what we create by reinventing our lives and subsequently recreating the country. It is about our individual responsibility to take care of ourselves and mutual help with each other. The government cannot simulate or stimulate real people doing real things only real Americans can do that.


On Feeling Uninspired

A need to recharge my inner battery...

People in the Midwest and parts of the East Coast are experiencing the worst of a heat wave across the country. Many of them are feeling the lethargy that those of us who are prepared for uber hot desert summers, no matter how we battle it, get re-acquainted with every year. It's a reverse of winter cabin fever in cold climates. In the dead of summer we can feel a little dead inside.

It doesn't just strike thinkers and creative types but everyone at some point around the end of July. We've done all the cool tricks, we're over hopping from the cover of one palm tree to another, tired of seeking that one shady parking spot left. We're overheated and overdone and in my case I become bored and uninspired, which is my personal version of mini-tragedy. It's a step away from anxiety and depression I must actively avoid.

It doesn't help that this has been the summer that the rest of America has come to realize the economic slowdown is a long term matter accompanied by gridlock in DC. That also there has been drama at my part time employment and my sister has spent most of it in the hospital. When all the droopy dragging drudgery is finished being verbalized, the bottom line is there is a choice. Sleep the rest of the summer away or kick the brain by natural stimulation of some sort. I've been fiddling away minutes on the new Google+ as well as whittling away hours on the old YouTube and it has been a pleasant repast. Not to say that hasn't been helpful but now it is time to get more serious. I must force myself outdoors, the heat is only bad if you're unprepared for it, to walk the urban pavement and shoot some video. I have an idea for one and I need to execute it to get out of the doldrums.

Ultimately the only way to get rid of the dread of inner dead is to revive yourself on your own to come alive again after a respite. I'm finished resting in the shade, drunk on gallons of water, tired of being tired and the only way to counter it is to get active in a creative way. There comes a point when boredom and lack of inspiration becomes an unhealthy habit and the only good response is to seek a jump start to the soul.


Arizona Landscape

Radiator coolant: Una fiesta limonfresante...

We need frozen innards in desert summer.


There Is No Going Back to 1776 or Prior to The Civil War or 1913

We may be able to return to the Calvin Coolidge era...

Revolutionary change happens in a big leap followed by incremental progress in degrees. 

Our government in the US has been acting extra constitutionally at least since the days of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Although we must restore it to the basic fundamental principles of the US Constitution designed by the Founding Fathers, I think it is unrealistic to expect it to go back the original form in one sweeping second revolution. What we can strive for first is a return to the last President who held fundamental beliefs of small and laissez-faire government, Calvin Coolidge.

There are several historical changes that have caused me to draw this conclusion. Primarily they are the Civil War, the 16th and 17th Amendments ratified in 1913 and the extraordinary powers unlawfully exercised by FDR that have been institutionalized by every President since. In my way of thinking the chances to roll back the changes those events brought completely in one fell swoop is highly unlikely.

Why do I believe this? The majority of the American people themselves are ignorant of our unique history, how our nation was founded, understand the principles that originally guided us and are incapable of drawing a sound conclusion. The generations after the Second World War and most particularly the generations since the sixties are the products of a society based on consumerism and an educational system where nothing of value regarding our history is taught and no one fails. They have the government they deserve because they allowed it to happen and are blissfully stupid about the consequences since they are beneficiaries of the idea of entitlement. Force feeding them an across-the-board change likely would not succeed since they will resist a revolutionary change and side with the current government, no matter how invasive it is, out of fear.

Another reason I think this is not possible is the changes that have occurred since the Industrial Revolution in communication, science and technology. We are currently in an era of huge disruptive change that also creates a different social, economic and political environment. When the Founding Fathers envisioned and created the US Constitution they were basing it on an agrarian society that is long gone. Additionally, as appalling I think both the 16th and 17th Amendments are repealing them is probably unlikely. The federal income tax is here to stay as is the direct election of Senators for the time being.

Most Americans only have vague notions and mostly incorrect ideas of what their rights are and believe our government is a democracy. Most of the rights they assume are actually only implied rights or rights enforced by court rulings and laws primarily regarding affirmative action quotas and employment law. They are clueless about the Bill of Rights and what it actually states. They are unaware that we are not a true democracy but a representative democracy that is a republic. To suggest or explain to them that the direct election of Senators is contrary to a republic and that it causes of a lot of our Congressional problems today would go nowhere.

We are headed for some sort of economic, political and social crash that is on a par with the Civil War and the changes that it brought. How it will play out is uncertain, in spite of the pronunciations of economic doomsayers, survivalists, preppers, radicals, socialist revolutionaries, et al. No one really knows and can predict the course of future history. More likely the crash will serve as a wake up call and result in a restructuring of our country rather than an all out collapse or another civil war.

There is a fast growing minority that is beginning to understand what the intention of the US Constitution, Bill of Rights and the Founding Fathers meant by a representative republican democratic form of government and that we have gone far astray from those principles. Those of us that understand this, it is our incumbent duty to educate and explain to those that do not understand and willing to listen and learn, what our government was intended to be to gain a majority to restore it. Regardless of what that entails or we will be awash in the flotsam and jetsam of government that will further encroach on our liberty and freedom of the individual.

Therefore I think the focus should be to return to the most recent modern era of the 1920s that small and laissez-faire government existed, accepting that certain elements of the Constitution will remain unchanged for the moment. This era did not cause the stock market crash of 1929 and subsequently the Great Depression, in actuality the period prior to Coolidge started government intervention and regulated monopolies did. Once we've re-established small government, then it will be time to repeal onerous constitutional amendments and extra constitutional laws and court decisions. Change and progress usually succeeds in incremental steps rather than a total revolutionary repeal that an under educated and unprepared people do not have the ability to cope with.


Arizona Landscape

Fourth of July Fireworks Exploding a Palm Tree...

What happened to Independence Day celebrating our liberty and freedom from tyranny? (psst...pass the hot dogs)


The Will To Survive

The inner strength to overcome adversity...

Inherent in American and British character, in need of restoration.

My sister has Scleroderma, an autoimmune disease that viscously attacks the body, of the worst variety. She has lived at least a decade longer than predicted and it was a decade ago this month she had a close call with death. Although she has lived with relatively minor inconveniences of this condition since we were in college, this past decade has been a long up and down, round the bend and back, ride of monumental fall backs and periods of respite. Throughout periods of extensive hospitalization, surgeries, treatments she has tigerishly fought to maintain her independence and survive as best she could.

Since the beginning of this year she has been battling another onset of a bout until this week she could fight no longer, going into the hospital one more time. It has been touch and go and she was given until today before they did another one of those uncountable invasive surgeries she's been through. This time she is so fragile it would be a dicey affair. Although very down and depressed about her physical afflictions she has maintained a thread of inner steel to avoid going through this again, mustering up enough strength to avoid surgery today. It will mean another long hospital stay but she had determined, no matter how weak she felt physically and mentally, that she would not go through another one again.

This got me thinking, this Independence Day weekend, that it requires a fiercely independent vein running though the soul to keep going against the odds others place against you. My sister and I are the products of a father who grew up in a family that worked to overcome and more than survive the Great Depression which was then followed his being a gunner on a US Navy ship during WWII. Our mother's teenage years were lost during the blitzes and bombings of Southeast England during the Second World War and her family steadfastly maintained the British coastal front as her father bravely headed Civil Defense. After the war and college both our parents left their countries for adventure and that is how they met. We are the products of fine examples of American True Grit and British Bootstraps.

Whether or not my sister and my will to survive is a result of genetics, upbringing or a combination of both is a heady matter I long ago decided was indecipherable. Far better to take advantage of the trait rather than study it. My lifelong difficulties have been the mental sort, a result of a creative mind struggling to rise above trying to fit a moody square peg into the round hole of a conventional world. It occurs to me that our parents held strengths that were not uncommon among either the American or the British people generations not so far removed from us. The largest problem we face today in this Great Recession and Era of Disruption is that of the mind and inner strength. We have for decades been decadently spoiled by too often getting our own way or what we want.

If we as individuals and as a people are going to get through this next decade of rebuilding and remaking our world anew, as the generation of my parents did after the Great Depression and the Second World War, we are going to have to fight being at the door of psychological death. It will require the traits that I believe are inherent in the American and British cultures but have been stored away and latent. They still remain and with all the might previous generations have done throughout history in difficult times, we must bring them out of the storehouse and implement them. All of the band-aids, chewing gum, baling wire, white glue of printing easy money, psychological pablum, escapism with psychotropic or illicit drugs and alcohol, wishing and hoping things would go back to happy consumerism, will not put the world right again. It is going to require the will to survive, thrive and inner strength to restore our common fortitude of good character and make ourselves socially, economically and politically healthy again.